Tyler Robbins Fitness

B.Sc. Biochemistry, Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS), Certified CrossFit Trainer (CCFT/CF-L3), USA Weightlifting Level 1

Day 4 - Think Like an Athlete

Think like an athlete! Athletes don’t exercise and workout just for the sake of exercising, they train with a goal in mind. It helps them stay focused and determined on their success.

Too many 'Average Joes' allow their workout programs to become stale because of sheer monotony or lack of interest. This can lead to a lack of results. In order to look and perform like an athlete, you should have the mindset of one.

First of all, set goals for yourself based on a timeline. Whether it is to 'look good' for a special event, or to be at your physical peak by a specific date, goals should be structured on a specific timeline. Athletes, for example, aim to 'peak' in performance by the beginning of their sport's season, 'maintain' during the season, and then taper in intensity to recover in the off season.

Next, don't be afraid of taking a bit of time off. Now when I say take some time 'off', that does not mean that you should sit on your butt and do nothing all day - although you could - I just mean to take a step back every once in a while from the intensity of your regular workout regimen.

You can still stay active, healthy, and fit without the need to do heart-thumping cardio, or slinging weights around like it's your job. Go for hikes, play with your kids/dog in the park, try some seasonal sports (skating, skiing, swimming, etc.), you know, 'fun' stuff.

By taking a step back every once in a while, you not only give your body a chance to recover and repair, but you also allow your mind to re-focus on upcoming goals. This can be a tremendous tool to allow yourself to build up momentum for what's to come next. Also, because you are not working as hard to burn calories and punish your body, it can allow you some time to focus on other important factors to achieving your goals like perfecting your diet.

Sure, your calorie expenditure may not be as much as it is when you are working out hard, but that is fine, try eating less, and making every calorie count!

Once you feel you are refreshed and ready to get 'back to the grind', you can then begin to focus your thoughts on making the most out of every single workout you do. This is the time to focus on your periodized schedule and make the most gains to your health and fitness.

By thinking like an athlete, you will want to schedule times of less-intense exercise, times of 'maintenance' exercise, but then also focus on the times of intense exercise. Athletes know that that is the time to shine, and push yourself hard.

When it is time for you to push yourself, you want to be as mentally, and physically engaged for your workouts as possible. Create a mindset or goal-oriented atmosphere for yourself where you will strive to achieve and perform as hard as you possibly can. This is the time to win those mental battles where you do not allow your body to try and trick you into thinking that the pain is too much. This is the time to push yourself to your brink. That is where you get results!

Quote of the day:
"Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time."
~Thomas Edison

Photo - http://www.tommattesportsmarketing.com/Celebrity-Athlete-Marketing.html